Canada’s Innovation Performance: A Scorecard
Does Canada have an innovation problem? Many commentators seem to think so. Yet despite receiving high-profile attention from policy and business leaders, innovation – and Canada’s innovation performance – remains difficult to precisely measure. Many of the common metrics associated with innovation performance, such as research and development (R&D) spending and patenting activity provide an imperfect picture of national innovation performance. On the input side, R&D spending may not be efficiently translated into innovation. On the output side, patenting activity may reflect other factors – such as patent inflation or shifts in the intellectual property strategies of firms – rather than the first step in transforming research into path-breaking products and services. Still, despite their individual imperfections, taken together such measures can help paint a rough picture of a country’s environment for innovation. In this context, this short paper draws on a series of proxy measures in an effort to gauge Canada’s innovation performance. Taken on aggregate, these metrics paint a picture of a country that is failing to keep pace with its peers across a wide range of measures, and suggests the need for policymakers to take concrete steps to address this ongoing innovation gap.
Canada’s Billion Dollar Firms: Contributions, Challenges and Opportunities July 2014
How does the Canadian economy perform in the creation of billion-dollar firms? Does firm size make a measurable difference in shaping the performance of the Canadian economy? What are the key drivers of growth among Canada’s largest firms? How significant are their contributions to domestic employment and research and development (R&D) spending? And what can the Canadian government do to help Canada’s largest firms continue to achieve success in the global economy? This presents a demographic analysis of Canada’s largest firms, their contributions to Canadian employment and research and development spending, as well as a jurisdictional analysis of Canada’s performance in producing globally competitive firms relative to a series of comparator economies, including Australia, Germany, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States. Download PDF